I had traveled through the State of Illinois, Missouri, a corner of Kansas, and was almost to the Oklahoma border, with not much of anything but trouble when I had a serious sensation occur in my mind that took over like a bull in a china closet. What had I been doing? I had gotten myself out of one cardboard box and immediately drove into another. And that only took me a thousand or so miles to figure out. I had run from the marriage to Harper and survived. Then came survival of the lone hitchhiker slash thief and two kidnapper possible murderers. My deduction was what my life had been reduced to. No meeting gracious strangers at sweet little antique shops or quaint cafes on my journey to the big city lights. Just more trouble.
I had become angry and whenever that particular emotion occurred in my psyche it caused a domino affect of certain high energy physical changes to come. I began planning constructively verses driving with fear as my passenger. I was mentally creating strategic moves to save Roger and myself from sure uncertainty. Suddenly as clear as a physical mirror-like reflection in a quiet lake, there the plan was, coming to fruition right before my minds eye. They say once you set your plans in motion the Universe conspires with you. And so it happened. And so.... I was ready.
The evil tractor trailer wagon train that had sandwiched me between them since Illinois had finally pulled into one of the larger Truck Stops outside Tulsa. Couldn't have fit my plan more perfectly. Thank you Universe! I did not waste a moment longer thinking. Rather, I had gone into action mode. I parked the Cadi and briskly trotted like an innocent schoolgirl over to Becker's truck. I opened the cab and the Universe and I took total control by saying I had decided to take Duke for a walk. I told him that I had been lonely driving all that ways alone and I needed some company as well as some exercise. I told Becker to relax and take a Rest Room run. Duke and I would be taking a long stroll out back and around all the busyness of the trucks comings and goings. Becker bought it. I calmly strolled away until Becker was out of sight. I then circled around the Black Panther Truck and hid Duke and I behind one of the other big rigs and waited for the Black Evil trucker to make his move. I was crouched down behind one of the huge tractor tires with Duke when I heard the sound of what I thought was someone unlocking the passenger side door of the trucks cab. Then the drivers side door opened and I observed evil man's legs from under the truck walking around checking something on the other side. I watched for Roger to look my way but he didn't. Then I waited for evil man to escort Roger out of the now unlocked cab. Evil's back was towards me, I stood up and waved. Roger caught a glimpse of my waving arm just before I had to duck back down and around the front wheels of an opposing parked Semi Trailer. Then they disappeared into the confines of the restaurant area.
If dogs could rationalize or even think in any sequential order Duke must have thought me crazy pushing and pulling him in every direction. My plan was working though. I waited until evil man brought Roger back out to the cab. Didn't people notice how Roger was being ushered around? I guessed not. I could see something was going on in the front of the truck but I couldn't make out what. Evil man then left for the dining area leaving Roger in the unlocked truck. But why didn't Roger run? What if he had been handcuffed to that moving black prison? There was no time to do my usual dwelling upon everything. I ran like the wind straight to the passenger side door of that big black scary eerie truck dragging Duke along with me. I jumped up on the running board and hit the window. Roger looked at me like he'd seen the "Ghost of the Outer Edge" as I flung open the door. It was then that I saw the ropes. He was tied hand to foot so he could not flee. I pulled my knife out of my white Bobbie sock and started cutting. I know, I now, who carries a knife in their cutsie bobbiesock. I did after my scare back in Illinois Ghost Alley. My Granddaddy had not only taught me to shoot a rifle and six gun, but also never to be without my knife which was usually tucked under the drivers side rug in the Cadi.
Roger was frantic. Talking like a Chidawinkers ass in pokeberry time. Or better said, diarrhea of the mouth. I told him to be quiet and get hold of himself. Told him we would be running for our lives as soon as the ropes were cut. In fact they were cut enough for him to shimmy out of that portable prison and pull the rest of the ropes off as we ran. Run Roger, Run, I screamed! Duke was right behind us all the way around the outside barrier of every different colored and sized semi truck and trailer. At least forty of them. I am not sure but I think we were both about to pee ourselves but the adrenalin rush had taken over and saved us literally. I think Duke had it going on too unless he may have relieved himself on one of the tires we had hidden behind. Regardless, he had been cooped up in that awful truck for so long with that nasty grumpy Becker, that this had been quite the outing for the old boy. In fact what to do with Duke is the one thing I forgot to plan and the Universe hadn't come up with any ideas regarding an answer yet. Or maybe it had.
We ran like the wind around to the front side of the truck stop. Roger dove nearly headfirst into the front seat leaving me to figure out what to do with old Duker boy. I dropped his leash onto the ground. Should I leave him? Duke gave me a loud bark along with one of those questioning lopsided frown faces. When I opened the drivers side door, I gave Duke "the look" and to my surprise he jumped right in over the front seat and made himself a cozy spot in the back. I turned the key, put the lever in Reverse, then put the lever in Drive and we peeled out of there like nothing I had ever done or seen before except on the television. We hit the highway and never looked back. I do wish I would have been a fly on the pocket of Becker's shirt just to see the look on his nasty ass face. As for evil man? No I didn't even want to play fly with the idea of seeing his face at that time or ever again.
That is when Roger began telling me why they had kidnapped him and why they had kept me so close at all times. At that moment, as we felt the freedom of Route 66 and the big city lites, all I wanted to know was why he had stolen my boom box!